What Artistic Movements Do These Rappers Exemplify?

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Rap Game Max Ernst: Riff Raff
Stylistically, rap has exploded, and the pieces fall everywhere from the mind-bogglingly complex to the unbelievably simple, from the brazenly dissident to the unapologetically mainstream. Rappers' influences seem to come from everywhere, but the stylistic differences between an Aesop Rock and a 2 Chainz are so stark, they got us thinking: Of 10 of the most important artistic movements in history, which rapper best exemplifies each? Stand back, Science comin' through.

See also: Five Rappers Fans Love That Critics Can't Stand

Abstract Expressionism
Aesop Rock
In general, closely reading lyrics often helps pierce the mentation of the songwriter. In Aesop Rock's case, close reading is more likely to confuse than anything, and that's okay. Like pieces of abstract expressionism, where it is useless to try to understand individual brushstrokes that the artist likely doesn't fully understand himself, Aesop sacrifices the dignity of individual words by pulling together masses of seemingly unrelated allusions and references for the sake of the entire song. Although a song like "Daylight" doesn't make sense when read like an essay, it has a powerful overarching tone that pulls the disparate parts together.

See also: The 10 Greatest Rap Songs About Video Games


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